This week on December 10 is International Human Rights Day. I've come to know IHRD as a day to expose and bring awareness to all the injustices and violations of basic human rights all across the globe. From the state-sponsored killings and disappearances of innocent activists in the Philippines, to the state-sanctioned violence and murdering of Black people in the US, I now more than ever, see the global connection of impunity of the state and grave violations of the most basic human right - life. Since 2006, I have both celebrated and mourned IHRD with Anakbayan Seattle, who has recently celebrated their 12 year anniversary of the founding of the Filipino youth and student organization. I had the pleasure of attending, and photographing, their showcase last week, Kilusan/Movement, which highlighted the stories of members who recently participated in exposure trips and relief missions to serve surviving victims of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines this past summer.
Just a few days ago, another severe storm hit the Philippines, known as Typhoon Hagupit (Ruby). The Philippine islands are still suffering from last year's strongest storm ever recorded on land, which left over 7000 dead and millions more displaced. Okay let's be real, they're still trying to recover from Typhoon Pablo in 2012, Typhoon Pedring in 2011, Typhoon Ondoy in 2009, etc. Which is why I made Disaster by Design, and why, unfortunately, it still remains relevant today. Please consider making a donation to NAFCON, the National Alliance of Filipino Concerns, who works directly on the ground with volunteer community organizers to make sure all relief and aid goes to the communities that need it the most.
It's important to not only raise awareness of social justice issues, but also the organizations that put in the arduous work to educate, organize and mobilize our communities to make this world a better place. And are hella talented doing it. Here's an original song written and performed by members of Anakbayan Seattle called "Home" at the anniversary show.